The showroom doors and service bays were open at dealerships throughout Dallas on Friday, although it was anything but business as usual following the shooting deaths of five police officers late Thursday during a downtown protest against recent shootings by law enforcement officials in Louisiana and Minnesota.
For many dealership personnel, the victims and their families were top of mind rather than closing a sale or following up on an internet lead.
Dealer Clay Cooley, owner of Clay Cooley Auto Group near Dallas, said his staff has been in a “somber mood.”
“Here in town, there was a moment where everyone said a prayer,” Cooley told Automotive News. “We don’t really have that kind of stuff down here, so it’s a shock.”
He said he is usually in bed by 10 p.m. and was reading email around 9:30 p.m. Thursday when his wife, who was traveling, called him.
“She said, ‘What’s going on down there? I heard there were shootings.’ So I turned on the TV and watched it until 2:30 in the morning,” Cooley said. “I’ve had two or three calls from some managers today talking about it. It was a shock; it’s not the norm around here.”